Team BikeExchange attacked the final stage of the Women’s Tour before Australian champion Sarah Roy sprinted to eighth place in Felixstone.
Spaniard Ane Santesteban put the team on the front foot as she jumped clear of the peloton around 60km into the 160km stage. Eventually a group of five formed at the head of the race and despite a level crossing briefly halting their progress, the escapees opened up an advantage of more than three minutes.
However, the peloton were keen to bring things back together for another sprint finish and they set about chipping away at the deficit inside the last 50km, with the race eventually coming back together with 14km to go.
Several late attacks came and went, but the day ended in a third successive bunch sprint with Roy fighting to another top-10 finish in eighth place as Elisa Balsamo took the victory.
“We were hoping for a bigger break to go today, but to have Ane up the road for most of the race was good for us and she had a strong ride.
It was a very fast chase in the end and with about 15km to go the break was caught. Straight away the attacks started and Teniel [Campbell] had a mechanical, so I was up there alone. I got in some of the moves, Trek was chasing most things down but Movistar kept trying.
There was a big crash about 1km to go as the sprint was really hectic. I tried to surf wheels as best I could but after the crash I’d lost a few places and to be honest I didn’t have heaps left in my legs after doing so much early in the race and again late in the race. My wrist especially is very tired now.”
2021 Women’s Tour Stage 6 – Results:
1. Elisa Balsamo 3:53:51
2. Lorena Wiebes ST
3. Chloe Hosking ST
8. Sarah Roy (Team BikeExchange) ST
Photo Courtesy of Getty Sport.